Some new info has come out on the mighty Witcher 3, courtesy of german site gamestar.de. The lucky folks over at that site had a whole two days with the game, and noted some of the things they liked and also made some interesting comments.
This information was then helpfully posted (in translated form) over at NeoGAF... so let’s see what they had to say.
- There are 4 difficulties (easy, medium, hard and dark) which differ in the skill of the monsters you face. Hitpoints remain the same.
- You can bargain for more money after finishing your monster contract through some sort of minigame.
- The side quests are extremely well made with great writing and branching.
- Potions are a necessity on higher difficulty levels. You only need to craft a potion once and you can refill it if you have enough alcohol present. Potions are upgradeable for stronger effects. Stronger potions will increase your toxicity more.
Interesting mechanic here with the potions, and it sounds as if it will streamline the potion brewing mechanic by a huge amount. So instead of having to sit down and brew, you can simply refill if you have the right alcohol. Nice. The previous mechanic was a bit longwinded, so it’s nice to see this being added.
- Novigrad and No Man’s Land are indeed one single map, much bigger than Skyrim. The isles of Skellige form the other big part of the game. Next to that, there are 5-6 other separated locations, including Kaer Morhen.
- No enemy respawning or at the least not very frequently.
We already knew this, but this still concerns me a little bit. This sounds as if it’s going to very much limit your grinding opportunities, so balancing of exp and rewards from the monsters you do face is going to be critical.
- Best items in the game must be crafted
- They were very impressed with the story branching and how it is not always obvious. Correcting ‘wrong’ choices by saving/reloading will be very difficult if not impossible.
- Contrary to BioWare games dialogue options are not good or bad, this you will have to figure out for yourselves.
Love the sound of that. The main issue with a lot of “choices” in games, is that they are very much “this is good” and “this is evil”, whereas life rarely works that way. So it’s nice to see that you won’t know what choice will end up badly until it actually happens. Feels much more realistic and also a lot less “gamey”.
- They really liked the in-game card game Gwent, praising its design.
- The game features two really big cities: Novigrad and Oxenfurt, both very lively.
- The are of No Man’s Land features 25 smaller towns, some of which are the size of Flotsam from The Witcher 2.
- Geralt can rob people, although the system is too easy and feels a bit lacking.
- Journalist (level 7) was one shotted by a wyvern (level 24). No level scaling.
Interesting choice here. They will obviously be encouraging exploration, but at the same time, encouraging proper levelling by giving you the drive to kill the monster that complete destroyed you a few levels ago. Also nice to see some difficulty, a lot of games are too afraid to do that, and it’s nice to see CD Projekt haven’t lost their taste for difficult games.
- Ciri sequences will be (in total) 5-10h and feel more like an action-adventure game than an RPG
- Extra storage can be made by crafting saddle bags for your horse.
- Many small details such as Roach stopping to eat apples from a basket
- All equipped items are visible in-game on Geralt
- Fist-fighting is back, this time no QTE
YUSSS! No QTEs is always a cause of celebration! While they aren’t so prevalent as they were a few years ago, it’s still nice to see that they won’t be included here. QTEs can be done right, of course, I’m just sick of them.
- World never felt empty
- Journalist didn’t encounter any simple fetch quests
Pretty nice, right? Well they had lots more to say, this time on the technical side of things.
- The HUD is fully customizable. Icons and quest markers on the map can also be deactivated. Audiovisual hints (e.g. people screaming for help) will be present if you wish to do so.
Lovely to see this! HUD is such a personal thing, some people like a completely clutter free screen, some others not. So nice to see that added in, although I am curious as to how this will be implemented on console.
- Journalist encountered no clone NPC’s
- Controller feels superior to keyboard+mouse.
- The extremely annoying doors from The Witcher 2 are gone. Doors are now opened automatically, no button pressing. No loading times for entering buildings either.
- Day 1 patch confirmed
- Xbox One resolution will stay at 900p
Hmm, so this very heavily implies that PS4 will be going up to 1080p. No mention of framerate, but at this stage we know it’s going to be 30FPS targeted
- Geralts beard will grow over time
- Switching between controller and mouse (for menu’s) is easy and fluid
- Most impressive dynamic weather system in any game he has ever played
- They encountered very few bugs, no crashes of freezes.
- Ultra seems to have a big effect on the quality of vegetation and character models
- No slider for LOD
- Visual gore more prominent than in The Witcher 2
Hmm. A little bit concerned that you can’t mess around with the LOD, as that might be a point of concern for people with lower end PCs, but of course we won’t know the effect this will have until we actually see a release. CD Projekt are usually pretty good at this sort of thing, but I am still a bit concerned. This will obviously be a very demanding game, but it would still be nice to have that extra little bit of customistion. But, perhaps I am worrying over nothing.
Regardless, The Witcher 3 is looking awesome, and I can’t wait to get my hands on it.